Posted by Andrew Utulu, Lagos | 30 November 2019 | 592 times
A 42 year-old suspected fraudster, Eqwim Rex Odinaka, has been arrested by the police over alleged threat of life, blackmail, stealing and obtaining under false pretense as well as using disabled persons’ NGO program to defraud people of millions of naira.
Odinaka was arrested by the operatives of the Inspector General of police (IGP) Abubakar Mohammed Adamu’s Intelligence Response Team (IRT), led by Abba Kyari, a Deputy Commissioner of Police(DCP).
Saturday INDEPENDENT investigation revealed that the suspect had allegedly defrauded victims since 2004.
His nefarious activities, it was gathered, was exposed when he tried to obtain N8.450 million from the Chief Executive Officer, CEO, Carol Shade and the Managing Director MD, Rosemary Akpo of EXP Nigeria company, with head office in Lagos, and a branch in South Africa.
Further investigation revealed that when he could not get the money (#8.450 million), from Rosemary the MD, he allegedly threatened to kidnap and kill her.
It was revealed that he further threatened that if the MD and CEO failed to give him the money, they may not live to see February 2020.
Sources revealed that based on the threat, Rosemary and the CEO became terrified, forcing Rosemary to seek protection from armed body guards who accompanied her to any place she went.
Also, it was revealed that the suspect’s threat made Rosemary to petition IGP Adamu who instructed DC Kyari to go after the suspect.
The IRT boss, Kyari was said to have detailed Philip Rieninwa, a Chief Superintendent of Police(CSP), who is the Coordinator, South West arm of IRT, to arrest the faceless suspect.
CSP Rieninwa and team was said to have swooped on the suspect, Odinaka and arrested him.
It was gathered that before he was arrested, an innocent person, called Wale Famakinwa was arrested and later released.
The tracking of Odinaka was said to have become more difficult as he dropped all his Sims and phones and was moving with only his wife’s Sims and phones.
He was said to have also relocated his family before he went into hiding somewhere in Abuja.
Unfortunately, his friend, Juliet was tracked and arrested.
When he had that Juliet had been arrested, he contacted another friend named Justus Ewelike and told him to call Juliet to enable him why how and what IRT operatives were planning to get him arrested. It was Justus’ phone call that gave the IRT clue to the arrest of Odinaka.
When the suspect was interviewed, he said: “I am from Lokpanta village, Umunochi Local Government Area, Abia state. I am married with five children.
I did my post graduate diploma in Business administration in 2005 at Usman Dan Fodio University, Sokoto, the national youth service same year in Sokoto.
In 2006 I worked with DAX Technology company in Lagos as accounting officer on #42, 000 salary per Month.
When the company folded up, I joined GA production, Addis Nigeria in Ikeja on #80,000 salary but when the company restructured again, I joined footprint Nigeria Ltd. on #150,000 salary.
When the company started restructuring again, I formed my own company. The named is Theatre of love Ltd., which is more of Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) in 2010.
The company was not registered; my main objective is to empower people with disabilities by sourcing fund with which I can use to buy wheelchairs, clutches, sewing machines for disabled persons. To facilitate sourcing of funds, l used presidential letterhead and it was not done for fraud.
I cannot say it was a failure because when I unveiled the disabled persons program in September 2018 it was a success.”
On why he threatened the MD and CEO and used two of his friends, Juliet Ofunni and Justus Ewelike bank account numbers to collect the N8.450million he was demanding instead of his own bank account he said: “I was afraid of the people sacked by EXP company. They sacked Otis and Azeez and some top management staff and they thought I was the one who caused it because I gave information to the CEO before they were fired. When I discovered fraud in the company in 2019, I reported to the management and as a whistle blower I expected the company to pay me compensation and that was why I demanded for #8.450 million.
I contacted Carol who is in South Africa for the payment of the money, she asked me to contact Rosemary who is heading the organisation in Nigeria. When I contacted her on phone, she did not give favourable response, that was why I resorted to threat.
We wrote to 20 governors and visited five governors. I am a consultant to Ebony and Nasarawa state government.
I used my wife phone and SIM because my phone was down. I used friends account numbers because I did not want anybody to trace me.
My only regret is that I wrote to someone that does not know me. It is a mistake I made. Please forgive me. I have gone to over 21 hospitals including general and private hospitals and non could detect what is worrying me. I even did brain scan and other scans.
I only wanted together money to offset my hospital bills and some of my assets I sold off when I had challenges. Please tell the MD and CEO to forgive me,” Odinaka pleaded. (Saturday Independent)
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